Milwaukee Brewers: 3 Players Who Need To Step Up In September
The Milwaukee Brewers are trying to reach the postseason for the first time since 2011. If they’re going to do so, these three players need to perform better than they have been up to this point.
Anderson was supposed to be the top starting pitcher the Brewers had this season. Jhoulys Chacin has claimed that spot in light of Anderson’s struggles.
Through 27 starts, Anderson has allowed a league-leading 28 home runs but his ERA sits at 3.96 currently. One would think with that many home runs, his ERA would be higher, but he’s been able to limit the damage to mostly solo- and two run shots. While that’s a nice silver lining, he still needs to stop giving up so many home runs.
In his last start, Anderson was able to keep the ball in the park, something he wasn’t able to do in any of his starts in August. It’s imperative that Anderson continue to not allow the long ball in September. If he can do that, Anderson could become that reliable second option in the rotation again, like he was last season.
And if Anderson can be that reliable second option behind Chacin, that gives the Brewers a better chance at succeeding in the postseason.
After the Milwaukee Brewers sent Jonathan Villar, Luis Ortiz, and Jean Carmona to the Orioles for Schoop on July 31st, many Brewers fans were slightly puzzled. After acquiring Mike Moustakas a few days earlier, getting Schoop appeared to be redundant. But still, he had a great month of July and most were excited about adding his bat.
That excitement turned to rage throughout the month of August as Schoop got off to a terribly slow start in a Milwaukee Brewers uniform. He went 5-for-35 with 16 strikeouts in his first ten games with the Crew. It didn’t really get better over his next ten games either and poor defensive play crept in as well.
With poor defense and no offense showing up in the first few weeks, many were upset with Schoop and there were even rumblings the Brewers might move on from Schoop in the winter, despite having another year of control over him.
He’s picked it up lately, though. Over the last two weeks, Schoop owns a .308/.367/.577 slash line with three extra-base hits and nine RBIs.
While it’s nice to see Schoop slowly coming around, he has to produce a lot more if he’s going to make an impact down the stretch. This is the key time in the schedule. After not producing for a month, Schoop needs a big September to redeem himself not only in the eyes of Brewers fans, but Brewers management as well. Otherwise they may be tempted to simply cut their losses during the winter.
Aguilar put up incredible numbers during the month of June, where he slugged 10 home runs with a .313 average. He overtook Eric Thames as the starting first baseman and forced his way into the All-Star Game with his performance in the first half. He was the Brewers leading MVP candidate for a while there. But it’s been a tale of two halves for Jesus Aguilar.
In the first half, he hit .298 with a .995 OPS and 24 home runs.
In the second half, he’s hit .234 with a .774 OPS and only seven home runs.
If the Milwaukee Brewers are going to continue winning, they will need Jesus Aguilar to get back to what he was in the first half. Normally, he’s hitting third in the lineup, behind fellow All-Stars Lorenzo Cain and Christian Yelich. They’re on base all the time. Aguilar needs to be able to drive them in and get back on a hot streak. With Aguilar producing in the middle of the lineup, this offense could be unstoppable.
Getting Aguilar back on track will be vital for the Brewers success. The same goes for Jonathan Schoop and Chase Anderson. If all three of those players step up in September and hopefully into October, this team could make a deep run.